Best Books of 2015

Hi everyone.

I can’t believe 2015 is over! I was supposed to post this in 2015 but i was super busy and then super tired and lazy.

BUT I AM SO HAPPY THAT I COMPLETED MY GOODREADS GOAL FOR ONCE!!! I managed to read more than 50 books in 2015 yay me.

So here is my list of the BEST books I have read in 2015…

I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson (2014 in the US and 2015 in the UK)

UK vs US cover

Why I Love It:

THIS BOOK OMG THIS BOOK IS SO BEAUTIFUL. I’ve read her previous book ‘The Sky is Everywhere’ and honestly that book is nothing compared to I’ll Give You The Sun. 

It is narrated by twins Noah and Jude so switches from view points. There’s a lot of art and pain in this book but the writing is superb and the characters are excellently written and the plot…omg the plot and the plot twists!!!

Noah’s descriptions are breathtaking and his curiosity and wonderment are just so adorable.

Jude is incredible, her fearlessness and her strength is admirable but stuff happens and it is just so heartbreaking.

There’s death,  love, hope and forgiveness and plenty of pain and suffering.

But overall this book is incredibly beautiful. I love the characters and the plot and the way they talk about certain things and it’s also really cute at times and i am a sucker for love stories. it’s about family relationships too and how messed up they can be when people keep secrets.

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld (2014)

US vs UK Cover

Why I Love It:

Oh this book!!! This is A BOOK WITHIN A BOOK. Okay so it’s about this girl Darcy Patel (A BROWN PROTAGONIST I KNOW!!!!) and she is a writer so we get to read her story too!!!

this book is great because it’s about writing and the publishing industry and also has representation and ‘diversity’ so that’s important too.

One chapter is about Darcy and the next is a chapter from her book so that’s really cool and i’m so glad i got to read two books in one! and both really good stories too!

you don’t get confused because the story Darcy writes is very different…it’s like a ghost story and has a hot brown guy who may or may not be Lord of the Dead…but the characters are well written and the plot is great so kudos to you Scott Westerfeld.

Mosquitoland by David Arnold (2015)

Why I Love It:

This book is everything i love in a YA book. A ROAD TRIP. i love road trip books and i really hope i get to go on many road trips in the future!

it took a while to get into and get used to the ‘quirky’ writing and weirdness of the novel and Mim but eventually i got used to it and fell in love with this book and her story.

So Mim is on a quest to find her mum but really…she ends up finding herself. i know that sounds cliche but honestly it’s really beautifully written and the friends she makes along the way are just so lovable.

Her friends Walt and Beck are my fave and i am so glad she realises how stupid she was so that’s good and also it has some great plot twists. I love how unpredictable it was.

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon (2015)

Everything, Everything Book

Why I Love It:

urgh reading this book was like a taylor swift song because i was dying from all the cute but then i was like ‘urgh this will never happen to me smh’.

So it’s about this girl Maddy who is ‘allergic’ to the world…as in she can’t go outside or she might/will die. so she stays inside and lives her life through books and the internet. i mean she’s wealthy enough to have a nice house so that’s fine but then there’s this NEW FAMILY NEXT DOOR WITH A CUTE GUY (how cliche but i am a sucker for this kind of thing) and then they end up talking online and fall in love etc etc

i also really liked the illustrations in the book but yeah it’s about Maddy and her life in that house until Olly comes and messes everything up (in a good way) but yeah i felt they rushed into some things *ahem* and i didn’t really like the plot twist but i LOVE the beginning because of how they meet and when they talk at night and that whole thing of falling in love and BEING ALL CUTE!!!

ALSO IT IS WRITTEN BY A BLACK WOMAN AND THE CHARACTER IS MIXED RACE SO YAY for that.

i felt really sorry for the mum and things should have been dealt with differently since she has suffered so much too.

but overall it’s a really cute book and the cover is also really pretty!

Stand-Off by Andrew Smith (2015)

i loathe this cover

Why I Love It:

the sequel to Winger. i didn’t expect to love these books as much as i do but honestly these books are HILARIOUS. it’s hard to find good FUNNY books these days but Andrew Smith somehow manages to do it.

This book is excellent in so many ways. Ryan Dean West is a senior now and has to deal with so much pressure but also after what happened in Winger (the thing with Joey) his anxiety is really bad and he has panic attacks and nightmares it’s really heartbreaking. i actually cried a lot reading this book because of how he wasn’t dealing well with his emotions and he was really confused and i’m like PLEASE GET HELP HKJHGJDFHGKDFJ

but thankfully he eventually gets help and things get dealt with which is good. also SAM ABERNATHY IS ADORABLE and has to stay with Ryan Dean and he is not amused it is sooo cute.

also his relationship with Annie is great and it’s really funny but also gross because guys are weird and think about strange things.

but i love this book and the characters are great and it made me really emotional reading it because i will miss the dork that is Ryan Dean West and his amazingly funny drawings (he draws comics!).

The Collected Works of A.J.Finkry (2014)/The Stories Life of A.H.Finkry (2015) by Gabrielle Zevin 

UK vs US Cover

Why I Love It:

This book is just so so so good. it’s about BOOKS and BOOK PEOPLE! It’s my kind of book.

It’s about this guy who owns this little bookshop on this island and about his pathetic life UNTIL SOMEONE LEAVES A CHILD IN HIS BOOKSTORE AND HE ENDS UP LOOKING AFTER IT AND HE ALSO FALLS IN LOVE WITH THIS WONDERFUL WOMAN WHO MAKES HIM SEE THE WORLD IN A DIFFERENT WAY and it is just so beautiful.

so A.J.Finkry compiles a list of books his daughter should read (there are a lot fo books i haven’t heard about but that’s fine because my to read list is never-ending!).

the characters are well written and i love the plot and there are some excellent quotes too but just a book about people who love books so as a bibliophile it is perfect.

Winter by Marissa Meyer (Lunar Chronicles) 2015 

Why I Love It:

THE LAST BOOK IN THE LUNAR CHRONICLES  OMG!!!

THIS BOOK IS REALLY REALLY FAT LIKE OVER 800 PAGES LONG but i got through it (just about). it was an emotional roller-coaster because every time i’d be like YES FINALLY something else would go wrong and i’d just be like WHY IS THIS HAPPENING? WHEN WILL MY FAVES BE SAFE AND HAPPY?!

so we’re introduced to Princess Winter aka like Snow White but she is black (this book has lots of diversity which is good). Winter suffers from hallucinations and visions so she’s dealing with a kind of mental illness and it is taking a toll on her. but she is a sweet character.

Also…Levana is just urgh like i hate her so much but then also you’re made to feel sorry for her and pity her but no matter what there is no excuse for your crappy behaviour and rudeness and also THE FACT THAT SHE GLAMOURS HERSELF AND MAKES ‘HER PEOPLE’ WORK AS SLAVES SMH (i still need to read Fairest and also there is a collection of short stories coming out soon called Stars Above). 

overall i thoroughly enjoyed reading this book even though it pained me to read some scenes and it hurt a lot coz i love the characters and i just want them to be happy but thankfully things work out and yeah I AM SO PROUD OF CINDER LFJGKJHGKJSDHSFKJ and kai is just too cute. also Iko is such a bamf.

it’s a good series and fairytale retelling!!!

Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta (Lumatere Chronicles) 2008

Why I Love It:

oh wow. this book. it’s taken me a long time to finally read the wonder that is Melina Marchetta. i wanted to read a book i could get stuck in and fantasy usually sucks me right in. this book. how do i even begin to describe the beauty that is this book?!

this book killed me.

this book is great because of the CHARACTERS!!! the plot is also good and the dialogue but i love the characters!!! Finnikin and Sir Topher and Evangelin and just basically everyone.

it’s about a cursed kingdom and so many have to flee and become exiles and no other kingdom wants them and it’s horrible and it’s about whether they can return home and what happens then.

also this book was also sooo realistic in the sense that the issues she deals with and the whole exile thing is very relevant to what’s happening today (ie Syria, Palestine etc)

if you like fantasy then you should enjoy this book. ALSO IT HAS SO MUCH DIVERSITY AND THE FEMALE CHARACTERS ARE BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN AND IT’S ALSO FUNNY AT TIMES BUT IT IS ALSO REALLY PAINFUL. i can’t wait to read the second book!!!

AND OBVIOUSLY  The Princess Diaries: Royal Wedding  WAS EVERYTHING I EVER WANTED AND SO MUCH MORE!

I hope everyone had a good 2015 and if not then hope 2016 is better with more wonderful memories and that you get to read lots of amazing books and travel to new places!

Thanks for reading my blog.

Hopefully I will be blogging more often.

 

Happy Reading!

“When I only begin to read, I forget I’m on this world. It lifts me on wings with high thoughts.” Anzia Yezierska

 

“We read books to find out who we are. What other people, real or imaginary, do and think and feel… is an essential guide to our understanding of what we ourselves are and may become.” Ursula K. Le Guin

 PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D

Why You Should Read The Throne of Glass Series

Hey there fellow bibliophiles!

Okay, so i HATE finishing a series or trilogy and having to say goodbye to some of my fave characters. But sadly that is part of the joy of reading…finally ending a series and hoping they get a good ending. So a few years ago I finished the Graceling Trilogy (Kriston Cashore) and Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy (Laini Taylor) and so I needed something to fill the gap of badass female heroine.

Along comes Celaena Sardothien.

Last year, I heard about Throne of Glass but wasn’t too sure about it so I asked some friends who have read it if it is worth it. They said yes.

She recommended that I read the prequel first so I did. THEN I NEEDED THE FIRST BOOK ASAP.

So…what is it about?

The series is about a girl called Celaena Sardothien who is an ASSASSIN and she literally slays. So yeah it’s about her life and the people she meets and the THINGS THAT HAPPEN…magical things…yeah it’s one of those books where she finds out about her past and uncovers the truth etc BUT IT IS REALLY GOOD.

Reasons to love Celaena Sardothien:

  • she loves books
  • she’s a BAMF because she slays
  • she loves pretty things…clothes..jewellery…anything sparkly and expensive
  • she loves shopping
  • she loves chocolate
  • she is not afraid to ask for what she wants
  • she is so cool you wish you were as cool as her
  • she loves puppies
  • she cares about her friends
  • she’s confident
  • she’s a STRONG INDEPENDENT WOMAN WHO DON’T NEED NO MAN
  • she’s really pretty and owns it…
  • she is flawed but learns from her mistakes…and sometimes she doesn’t
  • she’s been through so much and yet she can still smile and open her heart to new people
  • SHE IS CELAENA SARDOTHIEN AND SHE WILL NOT BE AFRAID

I can totes see Celaena rocking some Elie Saab dress while eating a box of chocolates.

This is also definitely something she would love!

SHE is the reason I fell in love with this series. But sadly…a lot has changed as the books have progressed and since reading the latest book Queen of Shadows…I don’t feel the same way about the character. and that breaks my heart because I honestly thought she would be in my list of fave female characters.

List of fave characters:

  • Celaena
  • Sam
  • Chaol
  • Prince Dorian
  • Nehemia
  • Fleetfoot
  • Lysandra (wait till Queen of Shadows)

Notable mentions: Nesryn and Manon (in Queen of Shadows)

Aedion is okay and Rowan was awesome in Heir of Fire but I did not care for him in Queen of Shadows.

The Books:

The Prequel: The Assassin’s Blade

This is the collection of 5 novellas.

I suggest you read it first as it gives you a background to the character Celeana and how she ended up where she is in Throne of Glass. Also…read it for Sam.

My fave story is the The Assassin and The Desert because she gets to meet some interesting people and learn cool skills.

and the ending of the book will kill you so you have been warned.

Throne of Glass

Technically the first book in the series. This is where Celaena leaves Endovier (slave camp) to fight to become the King’s Champion…even though she hates the king. she meets Prince Dorian who is an adorable puppy (not really he is just so lovely because he gives her books and chocolate) and Captain Chaol (who I love for many reasons).

Princess Nehemia is amazing. not only is she a beautiful black princess but she is just such a cool character and I love her.

It’s a good fantasy novel because Celaena is training to fight and get back on her own two feet and also learning to trust more people and finding out about magic and stuff. It will break your heart though.

Crown of Midnight

This is my fave book in the series because Chaoleana

but also the friendships are more developed and I just love it so much. It’s also one of the most painful books because PEOPLE DIE ESPECIALLY ONE OF MY FAVE CHARACTERS.

This is one of those books that lure you with their gripping plot and excellent writing and characterisation only to leave you screaming and crying and clutching your broken heart in pain.

Oh and there are plenty of plot twists and more questions that need answering.

Heir of Fire

This follows Celaena as she finds out more about her past and the truth about who she is. It’s also sad because my fave characters aren’t together…like it was awesome when it was Chaol, Dorian, Celaena and Nehemia having a great time but THAT CAN’T HAPPEN AGAIN.

You meet new characters like Rowan who is really important and plays a huge role in helping Celaena be the person she becomes.

Manon is also introduced as a witch but I wasn’t particularly interested in her narrative in this book.

THE ENDING OF THIS BOOK IS JUST PURE EVIL.

Queen of Shadows

This was honestly one of the most highly anticipated books of 2015 for me. and I am actually quite disappointed.

The characters have changed DRASTICALLY.

Celaena isn’t Celaena anymore and although I liked the new her in Heir of Fire…in this book it is such a huge shift and it just doesn’t feel right. I don’t feel the same love I felt for her character in the first few books. and I hate that. because the whole reason I love this series is because of the character Celaena. and Sarah J Maas took that away from us.

Chaol is portrayed as a douchebag in this book and that is not okay. Thankfully he redeems himself by the end but still I am so annoyed with her portrayal of him because he is my fave.

It is horrendous what happens to Dorian and I’m not so sure if it will end well…

I love Manon in this book and I am excited to see what happens with her character and the Blackbeak Clan.

Nesryn is a really cool POC character and she has great archery skills and her dad is a baker so Katniss and Peeta could be her parents LOL.

Rowan and Aedion were being too macho overprotective males in this book.

Lysandra is amazing and I love her in this book. Also she has the coolest power ever *spoiler alert* (She’s a shapeshifter!)

This book is also told from multiple narratives…lots of things happen and there’s a few plot twists but most importantly TWO MAJOR CHARACTERS DIE but it feels too good to be true.

Overall I was shocked at how Sarah J Maas changed the characters do dramatically from the previous books and I don’t know how I feel about the rest of the series. not very optimistic but I will probably read the next book. I mean the endings was pretty good but for 90% of the novel I was annoyed and shocked.

You should still read this series because Celaena is worth knowing despite the pain and change in character. She’s a character that can kick ass and also loves wearing pretty dresses and loves reading and I think that’s hard to find in YA because usually it’s one or the other…you can’t look pretty AND be a good fighter AND love books AND have crushes on cute guys…

ALSO IT IS GOING TO BE A TV SHOW!!!

Sarah J Maas has also written another faerie series called  A Court of Thorns and Roses (ACOTAR). It’s definitely a book for people who love topless guys and romance.

Also, Sarah J Maas can write. Her world building is great but also her characters especially female characters and obviously hot guys and her descriptions…her stories are gripping and well written.

I was lucky enough to meet Sarah J Mass at Waterstones Picadilly in May.

Unfortunately, we didn’t realise we had to queue outside so we didn’t get seats in the front…we were in the 5th row which was pretty bad as the queue for the book signing was insanely long! But we had good enough seats that we could see her and hear her fine.

Sarah J Maas is SO SO SO PRETTY…she reminds me of Jennifer Lawrence.

Sarah J Maas

  • She is also hilarious
  • Her dog Annie is her life
  • She loves unicorns and magic
  • When she was younger she was torn between being a girly girl and being a tomboy and she thought that you had to choose between the two (ie you couldn’t be a girl and like dorky stuff like Star Wars)
  • She stopped reading for a while and her teacher told her parents to take her to a bookstore and just let her wander and choose whatever she wants
  • First fantasy books she read were by Garth Nix and Tamora Pierce because they portrayed badass female characters
  • Celaena is her baby and best friend and she loves her and she knows exactly where the series will end (!!!)
  • She said Throne of Glass won’t end with Celaena/Aelin choosing who she ends up with (which is a good thing)
  • FLEETFOOT SURVIVES
  • But a lot of characters will die she kept on teasing us saying ‘IF they survive..’
  • ACOTAR 2 will have more hot shirtless men and 100% more sexy times
  • When her grandma read ACOTAR she sent an email to her and the family saying ‘what an imagination!’
  • She wrote ACOTAR after college.
  • She’s a workaholic
  • She loves Cheetos and she eats a lot of cheese when she is stuck with a book
  • Her best friend is Susan Dennard who has a book out next year called Truthwitch.
  • If Celaena and Feyre met they would probably be like 2 cats meeting…either fighting or sniffing each others butts or staring at each other. But she said they’d probably become allies not BFFs and would scare men away.
  • She loves reading paranormal romance books
  • None of the characters are based on people she knows but many of the characters who die have names of people who bullied her friends
  • She has her own copy of Throne of Glass which she asks the fans to sign (it is so cute and has so many messages)
  • Someone asked who her OTP is but she obviously didn’t say (it’s Rowaelin)
  • She writes the kinds of books she wants to read and I think that is so important
  • She doesn’t know when the TOG series will end so there will be lots of books to come I am sure!

She is so friendly and super funny and just really cute and she had this stunning sparkly jaguar ring and she was signing nonstop and was so excited that her London event was sold out even her parents were impressed (apparently they aren’t impressed with much).

It took us over an hour to actually get to meet her and have our books signed…and we were really hungry and tired by then! The shop closes at 9pm but they said they’d close at 10pm but there were still loads of people after us and so there were probably quite a few people who didn’t get their books signed. That sucks because we paid for the event and to get our books signed. But Alhamdulilah I managed to get mine signed! She also was nice enough to sign my book bag!!!

signed throne of glass book

I’m glad I got to meet her BEFORE Queen of Shadows because i probably wouldn’t have been as happy to see her…

Check out her website and follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr.

Happy Reading!

“Libraries were full of ideas–perhaps the most dangerous and powerful of all weapons.” Sarah J. Maas
“Don’t you do anything other than read?” Sarah J. Mass

PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D

 

Books Are My Bag 2015

Hello fellow bibliophiles! 

I’m so excited for this years Books Are My Bag because LAUREN CHILD HAS DESIGN A CHARLIE AND LOLA BOOK BAG!!!

IT IS SO ADORABLE I NEED IT.

 What is books are my bag (BAMB)?

It is a nationwide campaign to support bookshops as our high street bookshops are in danger (thanks to the cheapness of online books). It celebrates the act of buying a book in a bookstore where you can interact with other readers and ask questions about upcoming books as well as attend events…the beauty of a bookstore is not just that they have books but it has people who want to help you find the right book and they hold author events!

This year i have been trying my best to buy from bookstores instead of from amazon. If i do buy from amazon I use amazon marketplace so I get books from The Book Depository or Wordery)

on the BAMB website is a list of reasons to buy books from a bookshop:

  • You love books
  • You may be about to make a purchase you’ll value for the rest of your life
  • You’ll be shopping on your local high street
  • You’ll be helping create local jobs
  • You might just find a book you never knew existed 
  • You’ll find great gifts for friends and family
  • You can talk to real people about books they know and love
  • You’ll be part of your local book-loving community 

When is it?

8-10th October 2015 all over the UK. It happens every year so if you can’t make it this year then try to make a plan of it for next year. But, your bookstore might still be selling the bags throughout the year! 

Where is it?

you can check your local bookstore if they have any events for the day but usually you just go into a bookstore and they should have the bag…i think you get a free BAMB bag when you buy a book. the designer ones you have to pay for.

Why it is great?

  • because it celebrates books.
  • it’s a fun filled few days full of books and bags!
  • whenever  i see someone with a BAMB bag i know they are a fellow booklover.

Books I might get on the day:

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling (her new book!)

The Amazing Book is Not on Fire by Dan Howell and Phil Lester (aka Danisnotonfire and AmazingPhil from YouTube)

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Stand-Off  by Andrew Smith (the sequel to Winger)

Not on Fire, but Burning Greg Hrbek

AH…so many books to choose from. I might treat myself and get two!

Anyways, hope you guys go to a bookstore whether it’s Waterstones (they do Buy One Get One Half Price) or Foyles or an independent bookshop…celebrate the written word!

Follow BAMB on Facebook,  Twitter and Instagram

Happy Book Buying and Reading!

“Aren’t bookshops wonderful? The staff are always welcoming, friendly and incredibly knowledgeable about their stock – and they are great places to browse, to explore, to stumble across new literary treasures. Long live bookshops.” Malorie Blackman
“I love walking into a bookstore. It’s like all my friends are sitting on shelves, waving their pages at me.” – Tahereh Mafi
“Bookstores always remind me that there are good things in this world.” – Vincent van Gogh

 PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D

 

 

Princess Diaries: Royal Wedding

Hi there.

I’m not sure if i’ve said this before but The Princess Diaries is one of my favourite book series and Mia Thermopolis (aka Her Royal Highness Princess Amelia Mignonette Grimaldi Thermopolis Renaldo) is truly an inspiration.

so when i found out that MEG CABOT would be writing another book about ADULT MIA i totally freaked out.

Sadly…i had to wait till July to read it because it only came out earlier this month in the UK. and then my friend and i went to Waterstones to get it BUT THEY DIDN’T EVEN HAVE IT. we were heartbroken. i had to order it online then.

eventually it arrived in all its glory

Royal Wedding

 AND THEN I JUST READ IT. i was supposed to savour it but i just NEEDED to read it and be immersed in the world of Princess Mia.

i was actually kind of scared to read it because i had such high expectations but i was not disappointed and it was the perfect book. it was just what i needed- full of madness and laughter and adorable moments and just the perfect escape and the perfect read. it’s everything i wanted and so much more!

Mia is as mad and neurotic as ever…

Michael is as adorable and dorky as ever with his emojis! haha

MIA AND MICHAEL #RelationshipGoals

i was like

why are they so frickin cute?!

the Proposal scene was just dghakdfjghakdfjhg

HONESTLY JUST TAKE ME TO THE BAHAMAS TO SOME SECRET ISLAND THANKS

Grandmere and her side eye and sass and insanity and her poodles were just brilliant

LARS AND THE ORANGE OMG…my fave was actually when he said to some woman that ‘no one wants you there’ (in Genovia)

seriously this book is one of those beautiful rare laugh out loud books

Mia and her friends were seriously #SquadGoals

i love all their text messaging and how they are still as crazy and supportive as ever.

OMG MIA’S BROTHER ROCKY IS SUCH A CRAZY KID WITH HIS OBSESSION WITH FARTING AND DINOSAURS. IT’S HILARIOUS.

and omg Mia’s dad…was like…just…so funny but you also felt sorry for him but HE STOOD UP TO GRANDMERE FINALLY AND TOOK CONTROL OF HIS LIFE FINALLY.

also yeah there are some MAJOR PLOT TWISTS

one of them i already knew about since she has her own book (*cough* Mia has a half sister Olivia Grace). so i do want to read From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess.

but the OTHER plot twist…well idk there were plenty of hints but it was just too good to be true or like…too obvious?! but it was SO FUNNY!

like this whole book was just me FEELING ALL THE FEELS

AND SERIOUSLY…THE END…OMG THE WEDDING…I DIED. IT WAS PERFECT. HER DRESS AND MICHAEL AND JUST IDUFGADFJKFJGH EVERYTHING WAS JUST SO PERFECT AND BEAUTIFUL AND OMG IT WAS JUST RJGDJDFHGKDFJHGKJFDGKF MY BABIES…MY FAVES…SO HAPPY AND CUTE AND JUST KHGDKAJDFHKGJ URGH I AM SUCH A HOPELESS ROMANTIC BUT SERIOUSLY.

TOTES ADORBS.

so all in all…if you haven’t read The Princess Diaries Series then please do…it’s about a girl who finds out she’s a princess and has to deal with bodyguards and her insane grandmother and her even madder friends and also falling in love and etiquette and trying to be a proper princess while being a high schooler in america etc and just it’s just wonderful. i just have a lot of feelings about this series and these characters. i mean…the films are brilliant and i love them but the books are completely different.

so thank you Meg Cabot

for writing such amazing characters and books. can’t wait for the NEW MEDIATOR BOOK NEXT YEAR!!!

Happy Reading!

XOXO

“We want endings that leave us with a sense of hope, possibly because the world we’re living in seems to be falling apart right now.” Meg Cabot (Royal Wedding)

 

PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D

 

 

 

BEST OF 2014

so this post is…about 2014…the things that happened, books i’ve read etc

Books:

Throne of Glass Series by Sarah J.Maas –i still need to review these books and write a post on why everyone should read this series because Celaena is one of my favourite characters…she loves books, cake, boys and clothes AND SHE CAN SLAY…ACTUALLY SLAY…KILL PEOPLE coz she is an assassin. ultimate bamf.)

Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta-my friend is obsessed with Melina Marchetta and i’ve been wanting to read this book for ages because i have heard great things. this book did not disappoint.READ IT.)

Wonder by R.J.Palacio– this is supposedly a kids book. idc it is beautiful and thought provoking.

Winger by Andrew Smith– this book is so funny and heartbreaking i was laughing so much and i didn’t expect to frickin cry. it was a surprisingly good book.

Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins– oh my glob. the cuteness in this book is too much. i am posting my review soon. i am such a hopeless romantic so this book was everything.

Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor– the final book in the daughter of smoke and bone trilogy. oh what a fat book. what an intense book. and what an ending… i really love this trilogy.

City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare– another end to a great series. i doubt i’ll be reading the other shadowhunter books but i had the best time reading about the shadowhunter world and all these characters.

sadly in 2014, quite a few of my fave series or trilogies ended so i shall be writing a post about saying goodbye to them…I AM SORRY FOR NOT POSTING AS MUCH. =(

Movies:

Mockingjay Part 1– of course this is on my list. I NEED TO SEE IT AGAIN. but it broke my heart. so proud of Katniss and oh peeta kjdhskjghdfkjghkjf. you can read my review here

Boyhood– this is the film of one boy from age 5-18. great actors and a beautiful movie.

The Grand Budapest Hotel– i love Wes Anderson movies and this was brilliant.

The Fault in our Stars– urgh the pain. so beautiful and just i love this book and the movie is good.

Guardians of the Galaxy– honestly, i had no idea what this movie was about. i knew it was marvel. so i went to see it with my friends not expecting much but omg it’s hilarious i laughed so much my fave scene is the dance off and also GROOT OMG.

The Book Thief– Rudy Steiner i just can’t with that boy

Queen: The Movie– this is a Bollywood movie- absolutely brilliant. it’s not your usual Bollywood film but it is excellent. and really funny too.

Music:

1989– Taylor Swift’s 5th album slays. it’s pop, and shake it off is good but nothing compared to the genius that is the rest of the album. my fave songs are: Style, New Romantics, Blank Space and Clean. can’t wait to jam to all these fab songs on the 1989 tour. Currently obsessed with this Blank Space/Style mash up

X– Ed Sheeran’s 2nd album is incredible. i was lucky enough to go to his concert and wow he is just amazing. my fave songs on the album are: Don’t, Tenerife Sea, Photograph, Take it Back, Thinking out Loud and Afire Love.

The 1975– love their sound: fave songs are: Chocolate, The City, Girls and Heart Out

Oh What A Life-American Authors. my friend introduced me to them and damn they are good. they are actually amazing life so was lucky enough to see them when they came to London. my fave songs are: Believer, The Best Day of My Life, Trouble, Heart of Stone and Home.

TV Shows:

Outlander i know it’s based on a book but the book has mixed reviews. the show however is brilliant. mainly because of jamie fraser but also claire is pretty badass. Season 2 is back in April 2015

Modern Family– i love this show because it is consistently funny.

Arrow– sure oliver is hot but really Felicity Smoak is amazing and olicity needs to happen but i like superhero stuff and this is a good show. also i’m loving thea’s new look and i loathe laurel.

The Flash– barry allen is adorbs. cisco is hilarious. i want more arrow/the flash crossovers

The Newsroom– this came to an end and what an ending. brilliant show.

Orange is the New Black– i love this show. it’s so funny but also really emotional. i actually hate piper, larry and alex and only care about all the other characters and their back stories. fyi it is based on a true story.

Orphan Black– i didn’t LOVE season 2 as much as i loved season 1 but i am looking forward to season 3 in April 2015.

Jane the Virgin this show is like a telenovela which is a latina drama? it’s really funny and features POC and i like the characters.

Events:

in February i went to see Taylor Swift on the RED Tour. it was magical.

in July i went to YALC– the first ever YA lit convention at Comic Con. I MET PATRICK NESS.

i also met Judy Blume…so yeah 2014 was a good year for meeting some of my fave authors.

In October i went to see Ed Sheeran on his X Tour and damn that guy is incredible.

in November i got to see American Authors in concert and wow they are phenomenal.

i made quite a few new friends. =)

even though i spent the whole year in London i had a great time.

i passed my 2nd year of uni.

moved house…like with my family so i moved from the house i’ve been in for the past 11 years. which was pretty scary and hectic but Alhamdulilah i have a massive new room and i am loving it because i can fit all my books in it!!!

Finally got to see the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Musical!!! it was really good- so funny!

Also finally went to Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park…it’s super cold and sooo busy. kinda disappointed with the churros i had (mine are better tbh) but the magical ice kingdom was pretty cool coz it had an ICE SLIDE and also the sculptures were amazing.

so i’ve been to the Cereal Killer Cafe but i still need to go to the Cat Cafe so hopefully i’ll be able to do that in 2015. they have a huge cereal selection and the prices are reasonable.

Cereal Cafe and Winter Wonderland

Cereal Cafe and Winter Wonderland

the best thing about 2014 is i baked lots of things and read loads of books and had a great year Alhamdulilah. i am healthy and blessed and no matter what crappy thing i’m going through (usually stressing over essays or exams) i know it is temporary and i will get through it.

so despite all the crap that is going on in the world, i had a wonderful 2014.

i really hope 2015 is even better. i am excited but also pretty scared because i’m gonna be 21 and hopefully graduate university and have no idea what i want to do with my life.

but there are plenty of things to look forward to like:

  • A NEW PRINCESS DIARIES BOOK IN JUNE!!! you can read an excerpt here
  • Paper Towns movie
  • The Scorch Trials movie
  • and of course Mockingjay Part 2 (although i am dreading this because it’s the end of an era).

Have a FAB 2015!!!

thanks for reading my blog.

Happy Reading and don’t forget to follow @juwibakes on instagram.

‘today is a new day to be brand new…’

“Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?” L.M. Montgomery

more positive doodles here

“Be a little kinder than you have to.” E. Lockhart.

“A good goal should scare you a little and excite you a lot.” Chris Soriano

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” Leo Buscaglia

indeed

When I tell people how happy I am to be living alone and living my life on my own terms and to be free and independent and empowered, the first thing they say to me is ‘Oh, don’t worry you’ll find someone’ and that is so not the point. What if your life completes itself?”  Taylor Swift

I leave you with dancing groot

shake it off groot

PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D

 

 

 

So Long Spinebreakers

This is so hard for my to write because it means that it is over.

=(

So for those of you who don’t know, I have been part of Spinebreakers for around four years.

How did it start?

Well I was in Year 11 and in tutor period I would either be reading a book or talking to some friends. So this girl in my class would always see me with a book and suggested I join Spinebreakers. I knew about Spinebreakers because I have read a lot of penguin books and the YA books have the Spinebreakers logo on the back.

But I never thought of joining or applying since I’m always like ‘I’d never get in’.

But she said she’d put a good word in for me and so I applied. And lo and behold they accepted.

The first Spinebreaker event I went to was a workshop and it was lovely meeting all these different people.

The first author event I went to was meeting Anna Perera who wrote Guantanamo Boy and The Glass Collector. It was at Daunt Bookshop so it was really cool to hang out there AND meet an author and have her sign my books. I am not a stranger to meeting authors (Alhamdulilah…I have been blessed not only with the love of books but also living in London means I have had the opportunity to meet some of my favourite authors).

The Spinebreakers that I met were so welcoming and friendly and they suggested I attend the Editorial Meetings at Penguin HQ. (thank you Ciara and Cameron!)

So my mum took me to Penguin HQ on the Strand and I was so excited I had no idea what to expect.

I was not to be disappointed.

The editorial meetings consist of a group of teenagers who all have a passion for reading. The marketing team or some of the Penguin stuff from different departments (not just Puffin) come to the meetings and PITCH US BOOKS. So we get to choose which books we would like to read and review. WE ALSO GET ARCs (advance reader copies aka proof copies) which means we GET TO READ THE BOOKS BEFORE THEY ARE AVAILABLE TO THE PEASANTS (aka all you muggles).

free books…ARC COPIES OF BOOKS…

So the fact that I as a teenager discovered this world of publishing and free books is incredible. The fact that I could MEET NEW PEOPLE and they let me talk about books non-stop is amazing. They welcomed me and accepted me into the Spinebreakers family.

Shoutout to Lily and Atifa!!!

Naturally I sung about my elevated status with my friends and told them all to join but they had other responsibilities. However anyone I could find or tell about Spinebreakers I made sure to get the message across.

So Spinebreakers didn’t just give me free books but also the opportunity to make friends, meet authors, attend exclusive events and be part of an amazingly unique book community. WE create the content and WE choose what we want to do etc.

Some of my favourite Spinebreakers memories is when I got to meet MALORIE BLACKMAN…it was so informal and casual and we just started chatting as I thanked her for Noughts and Crosses and it was so surreal. Other authors i got to meet thanks to Spinbreakers: Meg Rosoff and Kevin Brooks as well as Beverley Naidoo. The authors love being interviews by Spinebreakers and they love that there is a book community for teens in the UK.

Also making the TFIOS video for John Green was so much fun because it means that HE SAW MY FACE KJDSHGKJFH.

Some Spinebreaker Books that i have really enjoyed:

Cinder series by Merissa Meyer

The Rosie Project by Graeme  Simsion

Between Shades of Grey and Out of the Easy by Ruta Septys

Winger by Andrew Smith

Secrets of a Henna Girl by Sufiya Ahmed

Great House by Nicole Krauss

and many more

I loved going into Penguin every month and seeing how the publishing industry is and then all those books. Being surrounded by BOOKS and BIBLIOPHILES is the best thing. Sharing the love for books.

Also the food. Oh gosh they always had plates of biscuits and fruit and drinks and it was so nice after school/6thform/uni to go there and just have some snacks and chat about books and what books we’re gonna read and review.

books and food

The Spinebreakers website offered me opportunities to improve my writing with reviews, creative content and blog posts. They offered a wide range of competitions which were so cool like theatre tickets or book sets and just so many wonderful things.

Spinebreakers wouldn’t have been possible without the collaboration of Penguin and Livity.

Livity works with young people FOR young people. they are amazing. Seriously their office is so cool (it’s in Brixton) and they run Live Magazine UK. If you are interested in joining just go to their office on Wednesday at 4pm. Or check out the website for opportunities. They are always tweeting about stuff for young people to get involved in.

Somewhere to is also this amazing thing where IF YOU WANT TO DO SOMETHING BUT DON’T HAVE ANYWHERE TO DO IT…they will FIND A PLACE FOR YOU TO DO THE THING. i.e if you want to put on a play…they can find you a place. Check out their website for more details.

So thank you Livity and the Livity team who have helped makes every editorial meeting wonderful…even if we usually got lost!

I cannot thank you enough: Danielle, Dwain, Aisha, Florence, Charlotte and Will for running the editorial meetings.

To all the Penguin Team  who have come to the meetings, been so friendly and offered advice and pitched us BOOKS- THANK YOU!!!

Above all…thank you to Anna Rafferty– The inventor of Spinebreakers. Without your dream of a book community for young people; a place where books are treated like films/music/games I wouldn’t have met all these wonderful people or developed my passion for books further. I have also read many books that I wouldn’t normally have read so Spinebreakers has challenged me as a reader.

So on Thursday 4th September 2014 was the Spinebreakers Party at the Livity office. There was crisps, popcorn, music, drinks and of course PIZZA. Oh and books. Duh.

Pizza Not Patriarchy is my motto

Anna Rafferty introduced herself, asked us questions, told us about the birth of Spinebreakers and what it was almost called (I won’t tell you it is too shameful). Sadly I was too busy eating pizza and talking to my friends to go up to her before she left but I shall defo be contacting her and writing her some long email thanking her.

It was good to see familiar faces of the Livity team and Spinebreakers and just hang out and talk about books. There was a timeline of Spinebreakers memories and a memory wall where we wrote some of the best times.

 

THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES

THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES

The fact that it has ended is heartbreaking because it has been such a huge part of my life. Seeing the same people every month or meeting new book lovers…I feel like a Spinebreakers grandma since I am older than most of the members and one of the first few Spinebreakers. I have stayed till the very end.

However, Penguin have said that IT WILL NOT BE THE END OF FREE BOOKS so that is excellent news.

THANK YOU PENGUIN FOR ALL THE FABULOUS FREE BOOKS and this awesome puffin bag

THANK YOU PENGUIN FOR ALL THE FABULOUS FREE BOOKS and this awesome puffin bag

Spinebreakers has given me a platform for talking about books with other book lovers across the country, meeting new people and just a safe environment without judgement to be yourself and share the love of literature.

Once a Spinebreaker always a Spinebreaker.

It’s been an amazing journey and i am so grateful to have been part of such a wonderful community

Thank you to everyone who has been involved with Spinebreakers and although this book has ended…may the adventure continue!

Thanks for the memories and books!

oh and of course…

i had the best time with you

Spinebreakers Crew: I Had The Best Time With You

Happy Reading!

 PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D

p.s the Spinebreakers website will be taken down so the links won’t work anymore.

pp.s TWITTER:

@LivityUK

@LiveMagUK

 

The Book Guru’s Book Giveaway

HI THERE!. welcome to my blog. thank you for visiting.

So i have moved house and omg sorting out my bookshelf has taken me like 3 days…i shall post a picture soon. it is a beautiful sight. =D

anyways so here are some books i liked but don’t want anymore like i won’t be sad to part with them so i thought HEY…why don’t i do a BOOK GIVEAWAY?!

Rules:

UK ONLY (sorry postage is expensive)

MAX of 2 books per a person

Must be following me on: instagram @juwibakes or twitter @juwithemad and subscribe to this blog!

first come first serve- message me about which books you want and your details please

Giveaway ends on October 11th 2014.

IMPORTANT NOTE: i have written my initials and the date i purchased the book in most of the books but otherwise i haven’t written in them or anything. They are in pretty good condition…apart from maybe The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks…but it is still readable AND…HELLO…FREE BOOKS!!!

it's yours if you want it!

it’s yours if you want it!

Perfect Chemistry is going to: Lily

How They Met and other stories is going to: Orli

so the rest is up for grabs!

Book Giveaway:

  1. The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

  2. Private by Kate Brian

  3. Necropolois by Catherine Arnold

  4. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

  5. The Key to the Golden Firebird by Maureen Johnson

  6. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart

  7. Runaway by Meg Cabot

  8. Not A Fairytale by Shaida Kazie Ali

  9. What I Was by Meg Rosoff

 

 

PEACE. LOVE. BOOKS. =D